Saturday, September 29, 2007

Simply Amazing: Amazing Grace at Carnegie Hall

A few months ago Rachelle and I had the privilege of meeting Wintley Phipps at the Oklahoma Baptist General Convention's Centennial Celebration. After the celebration - which was held at the First Southern of Del City, Oklahoma - Rachelle and I went to eat at the Cheesecake Factory in Oklahoma City. At the restaurant we were introduced to Wintley and his wife Anne by BGCO Executive Director Dr. Anthony Jordan and his wife Paula. Wintley and Anne were very warm and engaging in their conversation with us and Rachelle and I became big fans of their ministry that night. I had never heard Wintley sing until the Centennial Celebration, but I have since listened to him on multiple occasions via television and C.D.

My blogger friend Wayne Smith sent me the above video this week. Though this recorded portion of one of Wintley's performances is over eight minutes long, it is worth every minute of your time to listen to it. The recording is from Carnegie Hall in New York City and it has to go down as one of the most moving renditions of Amazing Grace ever recorded.

Have a great weekend and a wonderful Lord's Day Sunday!

In His Grace,

Wade Burleson


Anonymous said...

The first time I heard Wintley Phipps was back in '86' or '87, sitting in my dorm room with my roommates, watching Oprah (it was a show about gospel music which also featured Vanessa Bell Armstrong and the WInans). After hearing him sing "What Color is Love," I was hooked, and went out and bought his cassette. I've been a fan ever since.
Thanks for the post, Wade...
PS- You have to hear Wintley sing Truth's "He is Able." It's pretty great...

Anonymous said...

Thanks, Wade, for the post. I have watched this particular clip many times. I too was at the BGCO Centennial Celebration (with the finest singing group in the world, the Singing Churchmen of Oklahoma! I just had to slip that in) and was hooked then.

Anonymous said...


My self imposed 100 day curfew from SBC Blogs is now over.

What an uplifting way to come back with the subject being singers from Gather's Homecoming videos.
My wife, Donna, and I have at least 50 of those videos and we have just about worn them out looking at them.

In the picture we see Jeff and Sherry Easter in the upper left and Joy Garner in the lower right.

Jeff Easter hails from Mt. Airy NC which was Andy Griffith's hometown. The Easter music store is right next to "real" Floyd's Barber Shop which was the prototype for the barber shop on the Andy Griffith show.

Roger Simpson
Oklahoma City

Anonymous said...

Wow! Thanks for posting that. I first heard him several years ago at a conference at Baylor, but did not follow up on him and his music. I'm encouraged to do so now. Thanks for a great Saturday morning treat! Martin

Anonymous said...


Thank you for this clip. Now, I will need to find more of this man's songs.

A 10-40 Windows Missionary

Rex Ray said...

Thanks for the change of pace, and thanks to Wayne Smith. I enjoyed the talking as much as the singing. I never knew the tune had an unknown author. Maybe he/she will have a place reserved close to Jesus.

Few songs have touched men’s souls as much as Amazing Grace. I believe songs like this do a better job of ‘lifting up Jesus.

It’s a shame most Baptists have been led to settle for ‘second best’. I mean by that the ‘seven-eleven’ songs. (Seven words repeated eleven times.)

David Simpson said...

Hey, Rex Ray-
"Sing to the Lord a new song, for He has done marvelous things!" It's never shameful, or settling, or second best, to sing new songs to God.
PS- I bet I know more hymns by heart than you do. ;)

Anonymous said...

I hope you never go to any part of sub-saharan africa. The repetition might get on your nerves.

Wayne Smith said...

Thanks for sharing this Video and Write up with us.
This brings so much Glory to God, that I would think you would have at least 100 comments from Fellow Christians.
Maybe we do have a Problem with some excepting all Brothers and Sisters of Different Looks into Fellowship/Relationship.

In His Name

Cheryl Schatz said...

Wonderful! What an uplifting, God-honoring clip that was and it blessed my heart!

Rex Ray said...

David Simpson,
You may know more hymns but I’ll bet you haven’t sung as many. How about “I shall not be moved”?

As a young person, I didn’t understand the verse: “Though the church is moving, I shall not moved…”, but now that I’m old, I think I understand.

I feel like the captured Jews when they were told to sing and they replied they could not.

The church has gone overboard on praise songs. Has this happened because many years of control has taught our song leaders a ‘better’ way? You only hear the song leader and loud music.

Is there sound when a tree falls in the forest? Do people sing when never heard?

How sweet it is when no instruments are blaring and the leader steps back and there are voices.
The captured Jews are no longer captives…they’re singing.

The repetition in Africa may be a carry-over from voodoo days.

I’ve heard song leaders say to stop thinking…turn your mind off and repeat the words.
Reminds me of trying to get people in a hypnotic monotonous state of being mindless rock-concerts.

Thanks, but no thanks for me.

Wayne Smith said...


Wintley Phipps Bring Much Glory to God, WHATS Your STORY?

Hiding from the LORD are You, witha name of Anonymous???

In His Name

Anonymous said...

I love it all. I love the old, I love the new. I love repetition when I can sing and pray and praise God in my heart and mind. I love every single verse of hymns that tells a story and uses words like 'fetter.'
I used to be one who thought drums were evil, repetition was of the devil, and praise songs were dumbed down music far from excellent and certainly not our best. Then God told me to get off my pedestal and worship wherever I was.
After that, I could not only worship with drums blazing in the background but I also grew to love it (no one was more shocked than I).
Change is possible when you let God have control and put your preferences aside.

Rex Ray said...

Becca Sanders,
I walked a mile with gladness.
She chatted all the way
But left me none the wiser
For all she had to say.

I walked a mile with sorrow.
Not a word said she
But oh the things I learned
When sorrow walked with me.

Last year, how many times did you sing the Old Rugged Cross?

Some ‘great’ man said, You can preach anything from the pulpit, but if I’m allowed to write the songs that people sing, I’ll shape the nation more than preachers.

Maybe the type of singing is a reason less people are being saved.

Anonymous said...

I encourage you to check out
I personally am not a fan of contemporary worship music. I majored in choral music. That is what I love. I went to a traditional church growing up (though it isn't anymore) and joined my current church because of its traditional worship style.
My preferences remain the same. It is my attitude that changed.
"Maybe the type of singing is a reason less people are being saved."

But how carve way i' the life that lies before, If bent on groaning ever for the past?

Rex Ray said...

Good point.

Rex Ray said...

I heard some of the songs on, but they didn’t touch me like “Tell me the old old story; write on my heart every word; tell me the story of Jesus; sweetest that ever was heard.”

You said you love hymns that tell a story. Yes, that’s the way Jesus taught—a story. People remember a story.

I’ve been asked many times: “What did the preacher say today” and I couldn’t think of a thing, but if he told a story that illustrated his point, I would remember.

Can you remember the sermon you heard last week? I remember ours preaching on rules we live by because of the joke he told of a Quaker having his milk bucket being stepped in by his cow, swatted in the face by her tail, and kicked down. He told her:
“You know my religion doesn’t permit me to strike thee, but I warn thee that it does permit me to sell thee to a Baptist.”

Once, I was thinking, “I don’t like this song”, but I looked at the guy next to me and tears were on his face.

Becca, the song reminded him of something in the past.

As kids, we were left in the ‘picture show’ until the family went home.
It was customary a parent would be permitted to pick their kids up without paying. A lot of times we would beg to stay a little longer because we knew “It’s coming to the best part” since we had seen it as much as three times.
Our parents would say no, but Uncle Don would sit down and enjoy it with us.

Singing an old song is great because it fits into our lives; our past, present, and we know where the best parts are.